Eastward to Tartary: Travels in the Balkans, the Middle East, and the Caucasus

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Random House, 2000 - Travel - 364 pages
5 Reviews
In the closing years of the 19th century, the Great Powers -- Great Britain, Russia, France and Austria-Hungary -- began pecking at the corpse of the Ottoman Empire like vultures circling a wounded prey, nibbling off territories in the Balkans and the Caucasus in a land grab that resulted in the First World War. That war redrew the map of the Middle East, creating modern Turkey and the states of Syria, Iraq and Lebanon, the Kingdom of Transjordan and the protectorate of Palestine.The collapse of the Soviet Empire has brought us back to those years before WWI, as the map of Central Asia, the Balkans and the Middle East is once again being radically rewritten in blood, in a contest between ideology and power, nationalism and religious upheaval, money and opportunism. In "Eastward to Tartary," Kaplan returns to the Balkans for the first time since Balkan Ghosts and goes on to fill in the rest of the story. As in Balkan Ghosts, his emphasis is on people and history and on the shape of things tocome, as he takes us through Hungary, Romania and Bulgaria to Turkey, Syria, Lebanon and Israel before striking out east across Anatolia into the Caucasus and Central Asia -- to the oil rich lands of Azerbaijan and Turkmenistan, where speculators, oil men, crooks and gangsters are locked in a dangerous dance for spoils.Kaplan's vision of the future of the region will be hugely controversial: he predicts the meltdown of Lebanon, a ruthless partition of the Balkans, and

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LibraryThing Review

User Review  - theonearmedcrab - LibraryThing

Robert Kaplan is a traveling writer/journalist who tries to interpret what he sees in the wider context of the World. He has long been one of my favourites, although his later books are becoming more ... Read full review

EASTWARD TO TARTARY: Travels in the Balkans, the Middle East, and the Caucasus

User Review  - Jane Doe - Kirkus

More travels to difficult places in search of future geopolitical nightmares.Kaplan (The Coming Anarchy, 1999, etc.) has carved a journalistic niche writing about collapse and decay; if there's a new ... Read full review


Rudolf Fischer Cosmopolitan
Heading East
The Widening Chasm

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About the author (2000)

Robert D. Kaplan is a correspondent for The Atlantic Monthly and the bestselling author of seven previous books on travel and foreign affairs, translated into many languages, including Balkan Ghosts, The Arabists, The Ends of the Earth, and The Coming Anarchy. He is a senior fellow at the New America Foundation. He lives with his wife and son in western Massachusetts.

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